Tragic Sandwich

Food. Family. Fun.

Archive for the category “House and Home”

Why Our House Is a Disaster – Weekday Edition

caution tape

We’re refinancing, and on a recent Friday, we had a visit from an appraiser. The house was not even remotely clean, although I did set my alarm for 5 a.m. so that I’d have time to at least straighten up the living room (read: put things in stacks). Instead, I was so exhausted that I just kept hitting the snooze button. Sorry, appraiser.

Mr. Sandwich and I are constantly evaluating the way we spend our time, particularly on weeknights, so that we can finish everything we need to and be ready for the next morning, while still getting Baguette to bed. What does that look like right now?

5:30 a.m.

Get up, wash face and brush teeth, unload dishwasher, wash any dishes in sink and put in drain rack to dry, give dog her medicine, open dog door, take one egg out of the refrigerator, put skillet on burner (which is not yet turned on). If it’s a day when we send lunch for Baguette, prep thermos with hot water.

5:48 a.m.
Finish bathroom routine. Shower if I’m lucky.

5:53 a.m.
Go back to bed to keep Baguette from rolling out; Mr. Sandwich gets up, gets dressed, and leaves for work.

6:20 a.m.
Get up, counting on Baguette to not roll out; get dressed, pull her pre-selected clothes/socks/shoes off of the shelf, get diaper and wipes and put them with her clothes, scramble and cook egg, heat up food to go in thermos, put egg in portable container, put food in thermos, assemble her lunch bag, put her breakfast in her tote bag along with anything else needed that day (set out the night before). Put yogurt and granola in my lunch bag if set up the night before; otherwise plan to buy breakfast at work. Feed dog. Make sure back door is locked, cabinets are latched, stove is off, and refrigator is closed.

6:40 a.m.
Unplug anything that has been charging overnight and put in handbag. Go back to bedroom and change Baguette’s diaper. Put her pajamas in the hamper and dress her for the day. Comb her hair. After she lies back down, sit her up and comb her hair again.

6:50 a.m.
Make Baguette stand up and walk to front door. Pet dog goodbye. Pick up bags, lock door, coax Baguette down steps, put her and bags in car.

6:55 a.m.
Arrive at day care. Get Baguette and her bags out of car, sign her in, drop off tuition or hot lunch money or other paperwork as needed, and walk her to classroom.

7:02 a.m. If I’m lucky.
Leave day care. Drive to bus stop. Park car, run across street, hope to catch bus. If I do, hope to get seat. If I don’t, drive to work. It’s an hour either way.

8:05 a.m.
Enter building. Buy breakfast and coffee, or just coffee if I managed to pack my own breakfast (lunch is even less likely). Go upstairs and work.

5:00 p.m. Unless I have to work late.
Leave building. Walk to bus stop. Catch bus home.*

6:00 p.m. Unless traffic is worse than usual.
Exit bus. Get in car and drive home.

6:07 p.m.
Arrive home. Pet dog hello. Change clothes. Put away any dishes in drain rack. Pour milk into straw cups for evening and next day.

6:12 p.m.
Mr. Sandwich brings Baguette home. Feed Baguette as much fruit and/or Goldfish as she will eat.

6:25 p.m.
Take Baguette and dog for walk around the block (1/2-mile distance). Discuss day. Encourage Baguette to walk, but carry her for intermittent stretches. Let her run back and forth when the impulse strikes her.

7:10 p.m.
Return home. Pull together some semblance of dinner for Baguette while Mr. Sandwich helps her play with the hose (it’s hot out). Start her bath.

7:20 p.m.
Change Baguette’s wet clothes and feed her.

7:50 p.m.
Mr. Sandwich gives Baguette her bath. Set out her pajamas and nighttime diaper, take dog out, feed dog, close dog door, wash dishes from her dinner, empty her lunch bag and clean containers, straw cups, and thermos, probably wash the skillet from that morning.

8:05 p.m.
Dry Baguette off, put her in nighttime diaper and pajamas, let her watch Sesame Street. Continue to prep for next day, gathering any paperwork or materials needed for day care. Eat tortilla with peanut butter (if lucky).

9:10 p.m.

Go to bed. All of us, because otherwise Baguette won’t. (Note: That’s “go to bed,” not “go to sleep.” There’s no telling how long that could take.)

What’s missing from this picture?

*This is when Mr. Sandwich does as much laundry as humanly possible in 50 minutes. Neither one of us has time to fold it or put it away.

Photo by skyloader, via Flickr.


Liebster Award, Round 2

Karen at Dinosaur Superhero Mommy has kindly nominated me for the Liebster Award.

Now I have to admit that this award has been extended to me before. But it doesn’t look like I followed the rules, which say that I should:

  • Share 11 random facts about myself.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers.
  • Answer 11 questions about myself.
  • Ask 11 questions of my nominees.

Eleven facts:

1) I only ate chicken twice while I was pregnant with Baguette, because it grossed me out.
2) I don’t like carbonated drinks.
3) My passport expired a few years ago, and I feel really weird about that because until then, I’d had a valid passport since I was 10.
4) I was unsure about whether I wanted a dog until we adopted Wicket, and now I never want to be without one again.
5) I have known Mr. Sandwich since college, but we didn’t start dating until 11 years after I graduated.
6) Oregano gives me heartburn.
7) My younger brother used to tell people we were twins. I would follow up with, “But he’s three years behind me in school.”
8) I think there are places everyone should visit to get perspective. Those places include L.A.’s Skid Row, and Dachau.
9) I would really like to write a book.
10) I used to pretend to be a baseball fan so that I wouldn’t have to talk about football.
11) I am tired of being asked to fix other people’s writing problems at the last minute. Bring me in earlier, or leave me alone.

Eleven answers:

1) What would you do first if you won a million dollars? So many thoughts. Well, I’d pay off our mortgage and my brother’s.
2) What is your favorite room in your home? The living room. I love, love, love the paint color, and it’s where we keep the TV and toys. We do a lot of living in there.
3) What did you want to be when you were a little kid? A lion.
4) What is your favorite book to read to your child(ren) It doesn’t matter. We read what she wants us to read.
5) What is your favorite color? Blue
6) Which kid’s show do you wish was cancelled? We don’t have a lot of exposure yet, but it’s pretty easy for me to pick “Caillou.”
7) What is your favorite holiday? Labor Day, because it’s the one that’s coming up next.
8) What is the most expensive gift you have given someone? Probably the watch that my brother and I gave my dad for his 75th birthday, but I’m not sure.
9) Are you a good dancer? Depends on the kind of dancing. Going to a club? No. Ballroom/swing? Okay. Ballet? Not bad when I was a kid, but 30 years later I’m probably not very good.
10) How many kids did you think you would have as a child? Two.
11) What do you look forward to most about fall? I live in L.A. We don’t do fall here.

Eleven questions:

1) What was your favorite after-school activity?
2) What’s one fact or skill you remember learning from your favorite teacher?
3) What’s the most valuable piece of criticism you’ve ever gotten?
4) If you could only eat one vegetable for the rest of your life, what would it be?
5) Who is your favorite fictional character?
6) What color shoes are you wearing right now?
7) What is your favorite vacation spot?
8) What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done to your hair?
9) What time do you usually eat dinner?
10) What’s the best moment of your day?
11) What’s your favorite breakfast food?

Eleven blogs:*

Blogging with Mittens
Katie is a Teacher
Wandering Scientist

*”Hey! That’s only three!” Very true. I’ve been working on this post for two days. It’s very long. I figured I’d give everyone a break.

Traditions: Blogging, or Happy Anniversary to Me

Webster Anniversary Cake

As of today, I have been blogging for seven years. I think that hyperlinked text may be longer than my first blog post. So how has my blogging evolved?

In fact, (as you may be able to tell from that first post) I started two blogs–one was Cake Batter, and the other was Tragic Sandwich–which I later merged.

At some point I migrated from Blogger to WordPress, and haven’t looked back. (BTW, the “Tragic Sandwich” blog that’s currently on Blogger? Not me. I should have figured out how to keep that URL.)

It took me a while, but I did learn how to embed photos.

Over time, I got better at it.

What I write about has changed.

The structure of my posts has changed (I still like this one about disgusting wine, but I would definitely hyperlink it if I were writing it today).

With more years of marriage (Mr. Sandwich and I had been married for about 14 months when I started blogging), a home purchase, and most importantly the much-desired arrival of Baguette, my life has changed far more than my blogging.

That said, I am beginning to have an idea that I may be at the point where blogging starts to change my life. Fingers crossed.

How long have you been blogging? And what’s changed for you?

Photo by TN Something Special Cakes, via Flickr.

5 Things I Found While I Was Looking Around


How to Clean Every Room in Your Home with Items You Already Have on lifehacker

Save time on shopping for cleaning supplies.

How to Make Horchata on America’s Test Kitchen: The Feed

Make a delicious drink.

16 Deep-Fried Recipes on Babble

Also make some tasty food.

Book-a-Minute Classics on Rinkworks

Read a good book summary. Or at least a funny one.

Coolest Garden Rocking Chair Ever on Handmade Charlotte

Having cleaned your house, you can sit here while you eat your fried foods and drink your horchata and read your book summaries. And doesn’t that sound like a lovely day?

Photo by isthisyou, via Flickr.

Home, Sweet Home

Amber Dusick of Crappy Pictures has a very funny post about a series of events contributing to her young son’s decision to become a police officer, or possibly a movie director. I think he should be a movie-directing police officer. Why not? This is America. Anyone can grow up to be anything.

As she points out:

We live in Los Angeles, CA. No, this isn’t something we see all the time here. I see famous people more often than I see guns. I have seen police with their guns drawn one other time in my life but that was outside of a Target® in Madison, WI. So there.

And that’s true. Not the Madison, WI, part. I’ve barely been there. No time to observe anything, much less police activity.

But this morning, as Mr. Sandwich was leaving for work, I heard helicopters nearby. And one of our friends posted on Facebook that they had been over her neighborhood and woke up her daughter (Baguette’s Bestie). Apparently there had been a police shooting nearby.

We all live in perfectly nice neighborhoods–not Bel-Air or Brentwood (well, I don’t know where Amber Dusick lives), but good places to raise children. So this definitely is a noteworthy event. And I don’t even see that much police activity. The closest I’ve gotten to a shootout was when we lived in our crappy apartment, and the guy across the street got tazed after taunting the police to shoot him (I guess he really, really didn’t want to turn down his stereo at 6 a.m.)

Then again, I almost never see famous people. Except Michael Clarke Duncan. I’ve seen him at a Whole Foods and at a restaurant, and they were in very different parts of town. Hmm. Now I wonder if Michael Clarke Duncan is stalking me. Because I do not need to tangle with Omarosa. Yikes. What if Michael Clarke Duncan thinks I’m stalking him? Because, again, I don’t need to tangle with Omarosa.

But between the lack of police shootings and the lack of celebrity sitings, I’m starting to wonder: Do I really live in L.A.? Because it’s nothing like TV and the movies.

January09 516

Photo by Lord Jim, via Flickr.

A-Hunting We Will Go

Mr. Sandwich:Now that we’ve closed off their exits, they’ll be more and more compelled to eat the bait, and the traps will get them.

Me:That sounds like a plot out of Game of Thrones.

Mr. Sandwich: Or by Jack Donaghy.

That’s right. The mouse persists. But I refuse to believe it can outwit us forever. Just, apparently, in the short term.

Little Luxuries


The feel of a clean, dry bathmat beneath my feet.

The time to read an entire magazine, uninterrupted.

Macadamia nuts.

A leisurely bike ride on a cool, sunny day.

A box of sea-salt chocolate caramels that no one else knows about.

Not setting the alarm.

Photo by chrischapman, via Flickr.

5 Things I Found While I Was Looking Around

5 Spot

‘There are downsides to looking this pretty’ on Daily Mail

You’ve probably already seen and mocked this by now, but mostly I think it’s a handy reminder to remember that when people don’t like you, it’s often for how you behave and not what you look like.

Celebrity Living Rooms
on A Detailed House

I can’t imagine spending time in some of these, but I now covet that room in Cindy Crawford and Rande Gerber’s house.

Average Home Sizes Around the World on Apartment Therapy

Speaking of how people live, our house is apparently better sized for Europe than for the U.S.; the square footage falls in between the averages for Spain and France.

Star Wars art print of Boba Fett on Etsy

Finally, an answer to the question, “Boba Fett? Boba Fett?? Where???”

Chocolate Bunny Humor
on Beyond JEMS

Happy Easter, everyone!

Photo by Thomas Hawk, via Flickr.

That Wasn’t Mickey


A mouse worked its way in through a gap under the sink, where it feasted on garbage. So we went on the offensive. But the mouse was too clever.

It eluded traps, but feasted on the peanut butter, honey, and cheese that served as bait. We’ve spent the evening trying to trap it, capture it, and evict it, which meant that we probably looked pretty comical as we poked around with mop handles and brooms. (Baguette was distracted by a series of Sesame Street episodes; Wicket spent much of the evening shut up in the bedroom, which she seems to have found comfortable but confusing.) And by “comical,” I mean that the only stereotype I did not fulfill was jumping onto a chair. Mr. Sandwich even said, “I don’t think I’ve ever heard you scream before.”

After cornering it under the stove and attempting to chase it into the center of the room, we think it made its escape out the open door. Regardless, we moved the stove away from the wall and wound up dismantling it, just to be sure. If nothing else, the range and the areas beneath and behind it are much cleaner now.

But mostly, we really hope the mouse is out now.

Photo by Anifan, via Flickr.

Sofa Bed Calamity

Monday morning I folded the sofa bed back up and discovered that one of the legs has broken.


We’ll have to buy a replacement; in the meantime, we’ll be jury-rigging the broken leg. If we don’t, how will we get Baguette to nap on the weekend? But I’m a bit sad, because I do love this couch, and it’s only about 13 years old. That doesn’t seem that old for a couch.

But nostalgia won’t weld metal, and last night Mr. Sandwich and I agreed that it was time for a “sofa fund.”

Come on, tax refund!

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